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YouTube, Spotify, other major labels join forces to streamline digital music royalties

This could be big.


Christine Friar


Posted on Jun 14, 2016   Updated on May 26, 2021, 2:54 pm CDT

A new initiative proposed by Berklee College of Music may end up overhauling the music industry’s royalties system in the near future.

The Open Music Initiative (OMI) will be led by Berklee’s Institute for Creative Entrepreneurship in cooperation with MIT‘s Media Lab, and they’re hoping to improve how rights owners get identified and compensated for their digital music. 

The proposed solution? An open-source platform for tracking music creators and rights owners.

So far, a list of more than 50 media entities have reportedly signed on with the build. The roster includes huge players in traditional media like Universal Music, Sony Music, and Warner Music Group, plus newer streaming giants like Spotify, YouTube, Pandora, Netflix, SoundCloud, and SiriusXM.

“The internet led to an explosion of innovation precisely because of its open architecture,” said Neha Narula, director of research at the Digital Currency Initiative at the MIT Media Lab. “We now have the tools to build an open architecture for music rights, using a decentralized platform.”

With big names already on board and ready to collaborate, it seems probable they’ll be able to develop a tool that addresses the industry’s needs.

H/T Pitchfork

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*First Published: Jun 14, 2016, 5:15 pm CDT